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To the assumable frustration of partisan interests intent on blocking his confirmation to the Supreme Court, the discovery of a cover letter on an application to Ed Meese for a job as his deputy has not done the damage Samuel Alito's opponents hoped it would:
Seeking to tamp down a political uproar over a 1985 document in which he denounced racial quotas and said the Constitution did not protect the right to abortion, Judge Samuel A. Alito Jr. told senators on Tuesday that the sentiments were simply the views of "an advocate seeking a job."
The document, an application for a promotion within the Reagan administration, could complicate Judge Alito's nomination for the Supreme Court, opening him up to questions during his confirmation hearings about his personal views on the politically sensitive issues of abortion and civil rights. Other nominees have been able to dodge such questions, but both Republicans and Democrats said Tuesday that Judge Alito might be unable to do so.
PFAW has already begun cranking up its war machinery by creating new advertising campaigns against Alito using the letter, which explicitly stated his opposition to abortion and the Roe decision. Democratic Senators have started commenting on it, but Alito's quick response and personal contacts with them on the Hill appears to have mitigated the issue. Even Dianne Feinstein and Ted Kennedy acknowledged that his response -- the letter was written 20 years ago for a political job and he has a track record of fifteen years in the judiciary since then -- keeps him well on track for consideration.
The other problem for PFAW is timing. This came out in the middle of the dogfight on the "Bush lied!" meme that has sucked up most of the media oxygen on politics. The Senate vote yesterday on the Warner amendment took up the rest of it, and now the Woodward revelation on the Plame unscandal will probably overshadow Alito all the way to the confirmation hearings.
PFAW will still spend its money, of course; otherwise, it could hardly go out begging for more and use Samuel Alito as its bogeyman to fill the coffers. The momentum for confirmation continues undisturbed, though, and the Left's hysterical shotgun-style attacks on the Bush administration ironically threatens to make the Supreme Court confirmation the second-tier event it always should have been.Sphere It View blog reactions
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Tracked on November 16, 2005 10:00 AM
» Iago and Alito from bardseyeview
Hard to resist the parallel between the treatment of Alito as a Catholic, to be accused of potentially divided loyalties (the Vatican and abortion, the mafia and accusations of laying off when he was a prosecutor) and Brantio and Iago's treatment of ... [Read More]
Tracked on November 16, 2005 1:32 PM
» Full Bore Alito Panic from Hard Starboard
It is possible that a lot of us drew the wrong conclusion from the John Roberts SCOTUS confirmation saga. We, including I, discussed at length, as though it were a tactical construct, how appointing a conservative jurist of impeccable qualifications ... [Read More]
Tracked on November 16, 2005 6:21 PM
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